2008 Mazda 3 s Grand Touring 4dr Sedan w/Prod. End 12/07 (2.3L 4cyl 5A)
Bought the 2008 S GT 2.3L sedan brand new due to fun handling. My family has owned a Mazda 323 for years and the quality was really good. We were very disappointed by the quality of this vehicle. Very soon after we took delivery, we saw that the paint was very thin and chipped very easily. We had to put a 3M film over the hood. The carpet wore out int the first few months. Then it was the auto door locks, engine mounts, and struts needed replacement. at 60K, needed new ABS system. Around 75K control arm, cv joint, etc broke. The worst is transmission failure at 79K miles. We don't push the care and put low miles on it. It is very well taken care of; always maintained at dealership. I can't believe the many issues it gave us over the years. We will be getting ride of it at less than 90K miles. We won't be getting another Mazda. They are not reliable anymore.
I purchased this car in 2007 after driving one as a rental (during car repair). I fell in love immediately! I have owned mine now for nearly 11 years, and it has been a blast. Zippy with quick pick up, handles well, breaks are sensitive and crisp. The interior is very basic, with a CD player and a place to plug in a phone or MP3 player. Air conditioning is strong and cools quickly. Instruments are well placed. No major repairs or surprises over 10+ years and it has been reliable and dependable. My only complaint is that over time, it has become more noisy with highway driving, and the driver's seat a bit more uncomfortable. That said, I would certainly buy this car again - it is a blast to drive, handles well and a great price point. Still going strong at nearly 78,000 miles!
2008 Mazda 3 i Touring 4dr Sedan w/Prod. End 12/07 (2.0L 4cyl 5M)
This car should be great. It looks good, handles really well, and, from reviews, is reliable. The first two are true of my car, but it's been as reliable as a mid 70's Fiat. It breaks down more than John Boehner. Not only does it stall more than Herman Cain answering a question about Libya, the root cause took over a year to diagnose. Part of the problem ended up being a dirty EGR valve, the other part of the problem is still undiagnosed.
2008 Mazda 3 s Sport 4dr Hatchback w/Prod. End 12/07 (2.3L 4cyl 5M)
Beware. Noises from trunk, moved everything. Went to mechanic, new shocks/mounts. Still makes noise over bumps. No luck repairing it. Also had to get new wiper motor. No accidents, but hood is loosened from front side plates, the list goes on. CHEAPLY made vehicle. Back hurts from hard seats. It's a total waste of my money.
2008 Mazda 3 s Grand Touring 4dr Hatchback w/Prod. End 12/07 (2.3L 4cyl 5M)
Not for everyone; trade-off for handling is harsher ride, for light weight is more interior noise and, because the car encourages the driver's involvement, the gas mileage is not like a Civic or Accord. I personally accept these trade-offs for the handling, steering and performance. Spend a day driving on a curvy mountain road and arrive at your destination with a smile on your face.